Derrick Rose has no concerns that the projected starting five will be ready for the start of the regular season a week from now in Miami.
However, they won’t be ready for tonight’s preseason game with Milwaukee.
Kirk Hinrich [concussion] and Joakim Noah [groin] were expected to miss the game with the Bucks, but the surprise on Monday was that Jimmy Butler [left knee] had a setback after a full practice on Sunday, and will also be in street clothes at the United Center.
“We should be fine,’’ Rose said of the pending showdown with the Heat next Tuesday. “The guys, they know their jobs. When they came in, Jimmy when he did play, his defense is what we need out of him. Joakim is energy. And Kirk is going to bring a solid game with running the team and knocking down open shots, so I think all the guys on the team know their roles. It’s just that we have to get them out there.’’
Hinrich did say he was feeling better, but admitted that this was not his first concussion, so it was a matter of going through the NBA’s protocol for head injuries.
“I don’t know,’’ Hinrich said of a possible return date. “The tests are fairly new. I feel fine. I’m just following the proper protocol. I’m just doing what they’re telling me to do. I’m assuming I’ll hopefully get to do some cardio and stuff tonight and go from there.’’
The Bulls have two more preseason games after tonight’s, so the clock is definitely ticking. Just don’t tell that to coach Tom Thibodeau, who didn’t seem overly concerned with building chemistry with the projected starters between now and Miami.
“Whoever is here, that’s who we go with,’’ Thibodeau said. “That’s the nature of an NBA season. Nazr [Mohammed] has done a good job. Mike Dunleavy has done a good job. Whoever we have, that’s who we go with.’’